Interesting and Uncommon Material on the History, Exploration, Cartography, and Culture of the Four Corners of the Globe

Original photos of sailing ships

Original photos of sailing ships

On Thursday, December 13th, PBA Galleries will host an Americana – Travel & Exploration – Hunting & Sporting – World History – Cartography Sale. Up for auction will be over 550 lots of rare, interesting and uncommon material on the history, exploration, cartography, and culture of the four corners of the globe, ranging from travels into the Ottoman Empire and the Levant to cattle drives in the American west. Included are books, manuscripts, photographs, ephemeral material, graphic items, and a wide range of maps. There is a special section of hunting and sporting books, many from the Derrydale Press.

Highlighted in this sale are some San Francisco related works such as, original photos of sailing ships, from the R.J. Waters Company of San Francisco, with some over 430 gelatin silver prints ($3,000-$5,000). A scarce Merry-makers Map of San Francisco, 1940, showing all the night clubs, saloons, fine restaurants, and other entertainment venues of “Baghdad by the Bay,” the streets crosded by men in suits and hates, and women in nothing at all ($1,200-$1,800).

Kaempfer's History of Japan, 1728

Kaempfer’s History of Japan, 1728

PBA will be offering a variety of world history material: a 4th century sculpture of the head of the world-conqueror Alexander the Great, this was from the ancient Gandhara civilization in present-day Pakistan and Afghanistan ($10,000-$15,000). Nicolas de Nicolay’s popular illustrated work on the Ottoman Empire, Les navigations peregrinations et boyages, faicts en la Turquie, 1576, with depictions of the various peoples under Turkish suzerainty ($5,000-$8,000). The History of Japan, by Engelbert Kaempfer, 2 volumes, 1728, with 45 engraved maps and plates, most folding or double page, a key work in shaping western perceptions of Japan ($5,000-$8,000).

The Americana section includes rare Civil War broadside advertising a concert organized by “The Ladies of Charleston” (South Carolina) to raise money for the construction of a gunboat for the Confederate Navy, which was to become the ironclad ram CSS Palmetto State ($2,000-$3,000). Helen H Taft’s memoirs, Recollections of Full Years, 1914, signed by her and her husband, President William Howard Taft, in a rare dual signing ($2,000-$3,000). Also an autographed note of love an affection from American patriot John Hancock to his wife in 1971 ($3,000-$5,000).

Lastly, to be featured is a hunting/sporting piece, a rare issue bound in full ion skin, of Rowland Ward’s Record of Big Game XIth Edition, 1962, one of an estimated 35 to 70 copies so bound ($1,000-$1,500).

The sale will begin at 11:00 am Pacific Time and the public may preview the auction Monday, December 10th, 1 – 5 pm, Tuesday and Wednesday, December 11th and 12th, 9am – 5pm and on Thursday, December 13th, 9-11 am at PBA Galleries in San Francisco. For more information, please contact the galleries at (415) 989-2665 or [email protected]

The Wonderful World of Oz and More

The Patchwork Girl of Oz - first edition

The Patchwork Girl of Oz – first edition

On Thursday, November 29th, PBA Galleries will host The Craig Noble Collection of L. Frank Baum & the Wizard of Oz. Up for auction will be over 250 lots revolving around the world created by L. Frank Baum, from the marvels of Oz to his pseudonymous books for young people, and all that is related. The successors to Baum as chroniclers of Oz are well represented, with Oz and non-Oz books by Ruth Plumly Thompson, John R. Neill, Jack Snow, and others, plus Oz illustrators such as W.W. Denslow and Dick Martin. Included are many books in rare dust jackets, inscribed books, ephemeral items, and more. Gathered over span of four decades by Craig Noble, seldom does a collection of this scope come on the market in a single auction.

Craig Noble began collecting Oz and Baum books when he received the “white edition” of The Wizard of Oz for his fourth birthday. Today’s collection represents the culmination of a lifelong passion. One of the highlights in this upcoming sale is the first edition of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, the book that began the journey with Dorothy, Toto and their new friends ($2,000-$3,000). The Patchwork Girl of Oz, is the seventh of the Oz books by Baum. This is a first edition, first state, and first binding in the rare first printing color pictorial dust jacket ($4,000-$6,000). The first edition of The Giant Horse of Oz by Ruth Plumly Thompson is also going to be auctioned in our great Oz Sale ($1,000-$1,500).

First edition of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

First edition of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Some other work by L. Frank Baum will be in the sale. Sam Steele’s Adventures in Panama, was written by Baum under the pseudonym of Hugh Fitzgerald. This version is inscribed by Baum to his brother and signed as Fitzgerald ($8,000-$12,000). By the Candelabra’s Glare, privately printed and bound by Maum in a signed and numbered edition and illustrated by W.W. Denslow. This was their first collaboration ($6,000-$9,000).

We have a rarity signed by Baum’s wife, Maud Gage Baum, the presentation copy of In Other Lands Than Ours. The first and only printing of Maud Baum’s letters from Europe issued for private circulation ($4,000-$6,000). The rest of the highlights for the sale are as follows: W.W. Denslow’s The Pearl and the Pumpkin, the first 1904 first edition with 16 color plates, a presentation copy inscribed by the artist ($4,000-$6,000). The Wonder City of Oz, first edition inscribed and signed by the author and illustrator, John R. Neill ($2,000-$3,000). Lastly, two original oil paintings by Michael Herring used for the cover of the Del Ray paperback edition of The Giant Horse of Oz ($1,500-$2,500).

The sale will begin at 11:00 am Pacific Time and the public may preview the auction Monday, November 26th, 1 – 5 pm, Tuesday and Wednesday, November 27th and 28th, 9am – 5pm and on Thursday, November 29th, 9-11 am at PBA Galleries in San Francisco. For more information, please contact the galleries at (415) 989-2665 or [email protected]

Craig Noble, Passionate Oz Collector

Picture1Craig Noble began collecting Oz and Baum books when he received the “white edition” of The Wizard of Oz for his fourth birthday. Oz is a family tradition, so it was only natural that the Oz stories would be among the first that his mother read to him as a child. After finishing the fourteen original Oz books by L. Frank Baum, Craig was eager to read the remaining Oz books in the official canon, the “Famous Forty.” The only problem was they were out-of-print. That’s when Craig’s uncle told him about the International Wizard of Oz Club. In that pre-Internet age, the club’s “Oz Trading Post” was the best way to find others who wanted to buy, trade, or sell books or other Oz collectibles.

Craig took a break from collecting in his teens and twenties and returned to the Oz project in his thirties, coinciding with the birth of his first child. At an antique shop in Maryland, he picked up Oz books by John R. Neill, Jack Snow, and Rachel Cosgrove. Around this time, he purchased first printings of The Emerald City of Oz and The Road to Oz at an auction. As a member of the International Wizard of Oz Club, he subscribed to its tri-annual journal, The Baum Bugle. From 2013 to 2016 he volunteered as the journal’s editor-in-chief.

Picture2The collection represents the culmination of a lifelong passion. The books offered include: first printings of virtually every Oz and Baum book, many in first printing dust jackets; an incredible variety of variants and later printings; a copy of the scarce Sam Steele’s Adventures in Panama with an even scarcer inscription to Baum’s brother Harry using his pseudonym Hugh Fitzgerald; a first edition of The Art of Decorating Dry Goods Windows and Interiors, which is Baum’s scarcest book after The Book of  Hamburgs.

Though his collection was among his most prized possessions, Craig feels his two college-aged children are his greatest achievements. His son and daughter are simply priceless.

Ancient Sculptures from Gandhara

Alexander the Great - 4th Century Terracotta Sculpture

Alexander the Great – 4th Century Terracotta Sculpture

On Thursday, November 15th, PBA Galleries  will host a Fine & Rare Books with three important ancient sculptures from Gandhara. Up for auction will be over 200 lots of rare and significant material, ranging from second century sculptures from the Gandhara civilization to rarities of modern science fiction, important natural history works to original artwork for classic children’s books, and much in between. There are numerous early works on religion focusing on Catholicism, books and sets in fine bindings, color plate books, Asian erotica, illustrated books, medical book, literary landmarks, and much more.

Highlighted in this sale is the terracotta sculpture of Alexander the Great from Gandhara in the 4th century. His conquest of much of eastern and central Asia exerted great artistic influence on the Gandhara civilization, as well as social, cultural and military influences (Estimate: $25,000-$35,000). A sculpture of the head of Buddha from the Gandhara civilization in what is now Pakistan is being offered in this auction as well. The head was carved from gray schist, circa 2nd -3rd century (Estimate: $10,000-$15,000). These were both gifts from H.R.H. Muhammad Mohabbat Khanjee, the last reigning Nawab of Junagadh State in India, to Noor Mohammad Charlie, late husband of the current owner. With a copy of the letter of provenance by H.R.H. Jehangir Khanjee, grandson of Muhammad Mohabbat Khanjee, and Nawab of Junagadh in exile, dated Karachi, Pakistan, December 12, 1999.

Following Abraham Lincoln by Bernhardt Wall will also be up for auction. This set is completed with the original 85 volumes, is illustrated throughout with some 960 etchings printed in colored inks,  hand-bound in boards with dust wrappers. This is just one of one-hundred copies. created over a span of twelve years, with original etchings which chronologically follow Lincoln’s life and depict his boyhood homes and places of interest throughout his career (Estimated: $8,000-$12,000).

 Sculpture of the head of Buddha

Sculpture of the head of Buddha

Les Oiseaux by Édouard Traviès, 1857, an exquisite series of bird portraits in their natural habitats, with 54 folio color lithographed plates, finished by hand and heightened with gum Arabic. Édouard Traviès was one of the best known natural history illustrators of 19th century France (Estimated: $20,000-$30,000). We will also be auctioning Let Us Compare Mythologies, the first book by revered poet/singer/songwriter Leonard Cohen, an early presentation copy inscribed by Cohen the year of publication, with the original dust jacket. This is one of the four-hundred copies printed (Estimate: $10,000-$15,000).

Other featured lots in the sale include: Folio Aldine Press printing of Orationes horum rhetorum, in Greek, 1513, featuring writings by Aeschinis, Lysiae, Alcidamantis and others, a fine example if Aldine Manutius’ Greek printing (Estimate: $5,000-$8,000). Persian manuscript of the collected works of the 14th century poet Hafez, whose writings are regarded as a pinnacle of Persian literature, steeped in mysticism but also the joys of love and wine, executed in the 17th or 18th century (Estimate: $5,000-$8,000). Ray Bradbury’s dystopian novel Fahrenheit 451, where firemen ignite fires to burn books, one of 200 copies bound in special Johns-Manville Quinterra white asbestos, signed by the author (Estimate: $4,000-$6,000).

The sale will begin at 11:00 am Pacific Time and the public may preview the auction Monday, November 12th, 1 – 5 pm, Tuesday and Wednesday, November 13th and 14th, 9am – 5pm and on Thursday, November 15th, 9-11 am at PBA Galleries in San Francisco. For more information, please contact the galleries at (415) 989-2665 or [email protected]

Why collect cookbooks?

Celia of Omnivore Books

Celia of Omnivore Books

As the owner of one of the country’s few cookbook stores, it’s a question I get asked a lot. A simple answer would be that I love to cook. But a deeper response would be that, more than any other genre, cookbooks tell us everything about a culture, a time, a place, a people. Witness the lot in this sale on auto-camping, when cars were new to America’s roads and an entire subculture of eating out was born. Or the early African American cookbooks herein that guide us from the authors’ journeys from slavery to freedom, and on to entrepreneurial pursuits in the world of cooking – they bring us simple, hunger-satisfying recipes from their upbringings, as well as more sophisticated techniques they learned along the way in their careers into full citizenship.

First Creole Cookbook, 1885

First Creole Cookbook, 1885

Antebellum Southern cookbooks show us what foods were native to the Southeast, and how they were cooked at a time before the stereotype of fried foods and sweet tea overwhelmed the true soul of that cuisine. Oh, for a slurp of terrapin soup with delicate cream right now. Witness the game and preserving chapters in the 19th century community cookbooks from across the country, and you’ll understand what was growing in different states, and which migration routes wild fowl were following (before they got shot out of the sky and fried up in lard over the hearth).

Prohibition-era cocktail books divulge the secrets of how enterprising adults in need of a drink were able to procure one, and pre-Prohibition ones present the first appearances of many of the drinks we order today. This auction contains the first two Creole cookbooks printed, both published in 1885, which expanded the understanding of the foods that had evolved from the French Acadians, who moved South to become Cajuns. Lastly, let’s not ignore within these pages the 1541 edition of Apicius, the first cookbook ever printed, with its in-depth descriptions of spices and herbs used in the cookery of Ancient Rome. It sounds sappy, but as I catalogued that volume, I held the cool vellum binding to my cheek and closed my eyes, imagining the 450 years that had passed between its printing and my hands, and I swooned.

I hope you will, too, in reading this catalogue. Researching and cataloging these books was both an honor and a thrill for me, and I’m pleased as pre-Prohibition era punch to present it to you,

Celia Sack
Omnivore Books on Food

Join us November 8th at 11AM Pacific Time for our first Food & Drink Auction.

PBA Galleries’ Food and Drink Premiere

Apicius – First edition of the First Cookbook


On Thursday, November 8th, PBA Galleries will host their first sale devoted exclusively to books about Food & Drink. Up for auction will be over 350 lots of rare and collectible works on the culinary and gastronomical arts, with fine wines and cocktails, recipe books, housekeeping manuals, and others. Included are early African American and Creole cookbooks, Southern Cookery, classic 20th century cookbooks, early California cuisine, charity cookbooks, nutrition, medicinal plants, and much more.

Commonly considered the first cookbook, Apicius’ summi adulatricis medicinae artificis, De re culinaria libri decem. B. Platinae Cremonensis De tuenda ualetudine, natura rerum, & popinae scientia libri X from 1541, is thought to have been originally written in manuscript form in the 4th and 5th centuries. The foods described give an idea of the dietary habits of the ancient world around the Mediterranean, but the recipes are geared for the wealthiest classes, and a few contain what were exotic ingredients at that time (e.g., flamingo). The descriptions of herbs and spices not only show what was being used in cooking at the time, but also gives a picture of what was being grown and traded at the time. (Estimate: $5,000-$8,000)

The Joy of Cooking – 1/3000 copies of the First Edition of this American Classic still in print today

The Joy of Cooking

Two first editions by African Americans figure prominently in the sale. Published in 1881, What Mrs. Fisher Knows About Old Southern Cooking… by Abby Fisher was the second book by an African—Americana woman published in the U. S. Fisher, born a slave in Mobile, Alabama, moved to San Francisco after the Civil War and became a successful caterer winning numerous awards for her preserves at county fairs. The 1906 San Francisco earthquake destroyed many copies of this book making extant copies quite rare (Estimate: $8,000-$12,000). The Lone Star Cook Book and Meat Special, was the first cookbook written by a black hotel chef. Published in 1929 in Nashville, Tennessee, this copy is inscribed by author Artaway Fillmore to his mother and father, who was also a renowned chef (Estimate: $5,000-$8,000).

The Settlement – The Way to a Man’s Heart, one of the most successful cookbooks of the 20th century

The Settlement – The Way to a Man’s Heart

From the drinks section of the sale, Études sur le Vin, 1866, is a first edition of Louis Pasteur’s seminal work on fermentation in wine Illustrated with wood engravings and 32 color lithograph plates depicting fermentation, the work explains Pasteur’s work that demonstrated fermentation was the result of minute living organisms and the heating process recommended was the earliest description of “Pasteurization” (Estimate: $800-$1200).
A rarity from the 20th century is a first edition of The Joy of Cooking. One of only 3,000 copies, author Irma Rombauer published it in 1931, at the height of the Great Depression, her own expense to help her recovery from her husband’s suicide. An American classic, the book remains in print today. (Estimate: $3,000-$5,000)

Fisher – Second cookbook published by an African-American woman

Mrs. Fisher’s Southern Cooking

Other featured lots in the sale include: The Creole Cookery Book, 1885, the first cookbook of Creole cookery, and the first New Orleans recipe collection (Estimate: $5,000-$8,000); The Way to a Man’s Heart, the first edition of “The Settlement” cook book, published in Milwaukee in 1901 (Estimate: $4,000-$6,000); Alexandre Dumas’ posthumous culinary masterpiece, Grand Dictionnaire de Cuisine, 1873, the author of swashbuckling adventures taking on the marvels of gastronomy (Estimate: $2,000-$3,000); and The Carolina Housewife, by Sarah Rutledge, published in Charleston, South Carolina in 1851, the second edition of the classic Southern cookbook (Estimate: $1,200-$1,800).

The sale will begin at 11:00 am Pacific Time and the public may preview the auction Monday, November 5th, 1 – 5 pm, Tuesday and Wednesday, November 6th and 7th, 9am – 5pm and on Thursday, November 8th, 9-ll am at PBA Galleries in San Francisco. For more information, please contact the galleries at (415) 989-2665 or [email protected]

Antelope, Bison, Cougar: A National Park Wildlife Alphabet Book, Part of a Collection of Original Illustration Art and Illustrated Books

Turtle and the Moon

Turtle and the Moon

Most everyone remembers their favorite book as a child, a book with few words but vivid illustrations that transported the reader to new places and adventures. Collectors often start their collection with one of these books from their childhood but few have the opportunity to collect the original piece of art used to illustrate their favorite book. On Thursday, November 1st, PBA Galleries will offer a collection of original illustration art for children’s books.

Many West Coast contemporary illustrators of children’s books are represented in the collection with significant offerings by Jamichael Henterly (Arthur on Horseback), Elisa Kleven (The Puddle Pail), Melissa Mathis (Turtle and the Moon), Stacey Schuett (Outside the Window) and Daniel San Souci (Antelope, Bison, Cougar: A National Park Wildlife Alphabet Book). Many of the illustrations will be offered with a copy of the book where the art appears.
A highlight of the sale is an original watercolor by Daniel San Souci for Steven P. Medley’s Antelope, Bison, Cougar: A National Park Wildlife Alphabet Book. The illustration for B is for Bison, show a group of four American buffalo relaxing on the grasslands of Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Included is a signed and numbered limited edition of the book. The colophon is an additional page featuring the Florida panther in the Everglades National Park. Also, included in the books is a numbered lithograph of a drawing used on the G is for Grizzly page and a separate color print of the Florida panther.

B is for Bison

B is for Bison

Steven P. Medley has written about Yosemite National Park many times, but Antelope, Bison, Cougar: A National Park Wildlife Alphabet Book was his first children’s book. Dan San Souci has illustrated around fifty books for young readers and was the author for several of them. Both author and illustrator are Northern California natives with a passion for wildlife and national parks, as well as sharing the beauty with others. Daniel San Souci called this alphabet book the achievement of a lifelong dream, using his art to show the importance of wildlife in our national parks.

The Puddle Pail

The Puddle Pail

This auction is for new and seasoned collectors alike. Whether it is for a memory from childhood or for the love of collecting original illustrations, this sale will capture the eyes of many for all of the vivid images. Ranging from bedtime stories, to ABC books, to just plain fiction. Celebrate the art of illustration that captures the eyes of those who look at it.

The catalogue for the November 1st sale will be posted 2-3 weeks before the auction at The sale will begin at 11:00am Pacific Time. The public may preview the auction Monday, October 29th, 1 – 5pm, Tuesday and Wednesday, October 30th and 31st, 9am – 5pm; and Thursday, November 1st, 9-11am or by appointment at PBA Galleries in San Francisco. PBA accepts absentee bids by phone, fax or email or bids may be placed during the sale in person or online. For more information, please contact PBA at (415) 989-2665 or [email protected]

Hart Crane’s “The Bridge. A Poem” along with other Modern Literature and Poetry

656 thebridge

The Bridge. A Poem. With Three Photographs by Walker Evans

On Thursday, October 18th, PBA Galleries will be hosting a Modern Literature & Poetry with Books in All Fields Sale. This auction will include over 550 lots of modern literature, poetry, and other fine books, with science fiction, detective fiction, manuscript material, signed and limited editions, and more. The selection of poetry and verse ranges from 19th century icons to the beat generation and beyond. Included are novels and stories by Saul Bellow, Ray Bradbury, Raymond Chandler, Philip K. Dick, Ian Fleming, Dashiell Hammett, Robert A. Heinlein, Ken Kesey, Stephen King, H.P. Lovecraft, Larry McMurtry, Flannery O’Connor, J.K. Rowling, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., and many others. Among the poets represented are Paul Auster, Hart Crane, Robert Creeley, Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Allen Ginsberg, John Hawkes, Weldon Kees, George Sterling, and other luminaries. Additional fine books comprise fine bindings, historical works, finely printed books, etc.

Highlighted in this sale is The Bridge. A Poem. With Three Photographs by Walker Evans, written by Hart Crane. The Bridge was Crane’s only attempt at a long poem, inspired by his view of the Brooklyn Bridge from his Columbia Heights apartment. It comprises of fifteen lyric poems of varying length and scope. This edition is signed by Crane at the colophon, which makes it an extremely scarce example of one of the fifty signed and numbered copies (Estimate $30,000 -$50,000).

The Shunned House

The Shunned House

The first edition of H.P. Lovecraft’s, The Shunned House, is also in our upcoming sale. Lovecraft’s rare first book of fiction published in an edition of 300 copies. This copy is also accompanied by a typed letter from the publisher August Derleth (Estimate $7,000 – $10,000). An additional highlight from the sale is The Immoral Proposition by Robert Creeley. This is a fine copy of Creeley’s scarcest publication and due to its fragility, it has rarely been since in such beautiful condition (Estimate $1,200 – $1,300). PBA Galleries has an exceptional copy of Stephen Crane’s most enduring work, The Red Badge of Courage: An Episode of the American Civil War, in its extremely scarce dusk jacket (Estimate $15,000 – $25,000).

The sale will begin at 11:00 am Pacific Time and the public may preview the auction Monday, October 15th, 1 – 5 pm, Tuesday and Wednesday, October 16th and 17th, 9am – 5pm and on Thursday, October 18th, 9-ll am at PBA Galleries in San Francisco. For more information, please contact the galleries at (415) 989-2665 or [email protected]

All Things Golf from Books to Memorabilia

655 duffersgolfpapers

The Duffers’ Golf Club Papers

On Thursday, October 11th, PBA Galleries will be hosting a Rare Golf Books & Memorabilia Sale. This auction will include more than 225 lots of golfing history in literature and artifacts. Included are many volumes once in the library of the revered early 20th century Golf Course architect Albert W. Tillinghast which have been in private hands for more than half a century. Also on offer will be golf memorabilia from the esteemed collection of architect Michael Hurdzan.

Highlighted in this sale is the first edition of The Duffers’ Golf Club Papers, to which is added, A Day on the Ladies’ Links. This is a very rare book, only twice before offered at PBA Galleries. First at the Murdoch sale in 1998, a copy lacking the original wrappers, and a second copy, rebound with the wrappers preserved, was offered in 2011. The present copy is superior to either of the previous, in near fine original wrappers accompanied by a typed slip on Montrose Standard letterhead with the editor’s compliments. (Estimate $20,000 – $25,000).

655 manchestermeasuringdevice

Rare Manchester Golf Club Measuring Device c.1820

A rare and fascinating Manchester Golf Club Measuring Device from around 1821 used to assist in determining position of tees. Rules of the club are printed on a label attached to the device (Rule 1: The need to tee up not farther than four club lengths from the hole – “The first knot on the cord represents four club lengths.”), the ‘Stymie’ (Rule 5: When the balls lie within six inches of each other – Balls may be removed if within six inches of each other. “This measure is six inches in length.”), and position of putting greens (Rule 9: All loose impediments may be removed within six club lengths of the hole “The extreme length of the cord represents six club lengths.”). This is one of only two known examples, the other being at the Manchester Golf Club. (Estimate $7,000 – $10,000).

655 bobbyjones

Signed portrait of Bobby Jones

Additional highlights from the sale are a stoneware fluted stein with relief illustration of golfers by Doulton Lambeth (Estimate $500 – $800); a signed color print of the Margaret Fitzhugh Browne portrait of Bobby Jones signed by the famed golfer and dated December 29, 1930 (Estimate $2,000 – $3,000); an early 1900s Croquet-Styled Putter from the Jeff Ellis collection, is pictured in Mr. Ellis’ book The Club Maker’s Art on page 210. (Estimate $800 – $1,200); and 56 Corte-Scope Golf Stereoviews from the “Jock” Hutchison Series, a rare series of instructional views featuring the Scottish-American professional golfer with the original manila envelope, folding viewer and two-part box (Estimate $1,000 – $1,500).

The sale will begin at 5:00 pm Eastern Time-2:00 pm Pacific Time at the Renaissance World of Golf Village in St. Augustine, Florida, the venue of the 47th Annual Golf Heritage Society’s Annual Meeting and Trade Show. The public may preview the auction Thursday, October 11th, 12:00pm – 5:00 pm Eastern Time in the Legacy 2 Ballroom at the Golf Village. For more information contact the galleries at 415.989.2665 or [email protected]

Correspondence Between Saints Highlights Sept 20th Sale

Correspondence Between Saints

Correspondence Between Saints

On Thursday, September 20th, PBA Galleries will offer Rare Books and Manuscripts from the Library of James “Ted” Watkins. Included in the sale are over 300 lots of rare, interesting, and significant material from six centuries, spanning the gamut of Western civilization, from the early days of Christianity to modern science fiction.  Ted Watkins’ interests were many and varied, with few bounds on his intellectual curiosity. Primary to his collection is the large number of scarce works relating to the Christian religion, particularly Catholicism. There is also a selection of modern literature, including collections of Ray Bradbury and Flannery O’Connor plus illustrated books, fine bindings, history, political science, and more.

The highlight of the sale is a two-page autograph letter from Louise de Merillac de Gras, with 11 lines of notations in the hand of Vincent de Paul. This rare correspondence between two future saints who worked together in the co-founding of the Daughters of Charity (later Sisters of Charity) in 1634, is beautifully matted and framed with both sides visible in a hinged frame which is attached to a larger frame, with dual portrait and three engraved plates, one identifying the signers, one with an English translation of the letter, and the third with a long descriptive essay. (Estimate: $10,000-$15,000)

Illuminated manuscript of The Vision of Sir Launfal

Illuminated manuscript of The Vision of Sir Launfal

Other featured religious lots include the Illuminated manuscript of James Russell Lowell’s The Vision of Sir Launfal. Exquisitely bound by Sangorski and Sutcliffe in full brown morocco with onlay green and black elaborate Celtic style design, gilt-tooled patterns and borders, spine with raised bands, compartments decoratively lettered and tooled in gilt, the volume was also designed, written out, illuminated by them (Estimate: $10,000-$15,000). The Epistles on Morality (Morali sopra Job) of Pope Gregory I, 2 volumes, published in Florence in 1486, is one of the storehouses of moral science of the Renaissance and his most esteemed work (Estimate: $3,000-$5,000).

Rockwell Kent's Moby Dick

Rockwell Kent’s Moby Dick

Herman Melville’s classic novel of the sea, Moby Dick or the Whale, is limited to 1000 copies, housed in the publisher’s original aluminum slipcase. The three volumes are illustrated with 280 reproductions of pen, brush and ink drawings by Rockwell Kent. This copy is signed by Kent in pencil, with a sketch of a stylized whale tale, the design on the front cover of the book (Estimate: $7,000-$10,000). Another limited edition work housed in an aluminum case in this sale is the Arion Press edition of Edwin A. Abbott’s Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions. Limited to 275 copies, the volume is in an aluminum frame case binding of a unique and innovative design (Estimate: $1,200-$1,800).

Other highlights of the sale include: Flannery O’Connor’s first book, Wise Blood, in the original dust jacket, inscribed by her to the senior editor at Houghton Mifflin (Estimate: $5,000-$8,000); Zane Grey’s Tales of Fresh-Water Fishing, 1926, specially bound for the author in three quarter green morocco, with Grey’s personal blindstamp at the top corner of the front flyleaf (Estimate: $3,000-$5,000); The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas, the first edition, 1933, in dust jacket, inscribed by both Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas (Estimate: $1,500-$2,000); and a rare first edition of Girolami Dandini’s Missione apostolica al patriarca to Mount Lebanon, 1656, with descriptions of customs and manners of the Turks, the cities of  Candia and Tripoly, etc. (Estimate: $2,000-$3,000).

The sale will begin at 11:00 am Pacific Time and the public may preview the auction Monday, September 17th, 1 – 5pm, Tuesday and Wednesday, September 18th and 19th, 9am-5pm and on Thursday, September 20th, 9-11am at PBA Galleries in San Francisco. For more information, please contact the galleries at (415) 989-2665 or [email protected].

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